From San Diego up to Seattle, people are building barriers of sandbags along the coast in fear of the ‘king of tides’ set to flood the western shores.
The phenomenon is predicted to increase water levels by more than seven feet in low-lying areas of California and 10 feet in parts of Oregon during the peak before noon.
While these events are typical in the winter, this one follows recent rain storms that battered the west and is happening when a new moon hangs in the sky – and it will be the closest to Earth than it has in more than 1,000.
Ellen Plane, an environmental scientist at the San Francisco Estuary Institute, told Bay Nature that because of the rise in sea level in recent years, ‘those king tides are going to be our average daily high tides.’
An unusually high tide is set to hit the west coast states this weekend, bringing up to feet high tides in some parts. California (pictured) was battered by storms in recent weeks
Meteorologist Kelley Bayern shared a stark warning on Twitter Friday: ‘King tides arrive on the Oregon coast today and this weekend. Expect significantly higher tide levels [and] sneaker waves. Please use extra caution on the sand.’
Sneaker waves often happen in Northern California and Oregon.
They are significantly larger than the previous waves and can happen without warning signs.
King tides, however, are predictable before they bring a flow of water from the marina to surrounding towns.
Matt Zaffino, chief meteorologist at KGW TV in Portland, Oregon, shared in a tweet: ‘Extreme high and low tides this weekend courtesy of the new moon. Luckily, the sea state off the Oregon and Washington coasts will not be extreme.
King tide is not a scientific name, but a catchy term from Australia to describe the year’s highest high tides.
The National Weather Service issued a Flood Advisory for the Peninsula coast on Thursday due to the expected high tides.
And the advisory, which is in effect through Monday afternoon.
King tides already ravaged Seattle in December, which saw dozens of families forced to evacuate their homes in a South Park neighborhood.
Homeowners reported seeing up to four feet of water flowing through their backyards after the event disappeared.
Nicholas Michiels, a resident of South Park, told KIRO 7: ‘Our childhood pictures and stuff we had to peel them apart, lay them on paper towels, and try to take pictures of them.
‘We definitely got burned, but we’re working really hard not to keep our hands in the coals.’
Oregon is the king of tides’ path and meteorologists are warning residents to be prepared
The tide will reach more than 10 feet in Oregon Saturday afternoon, but will dramatically drop several hours later
Along with the high tides, the king tides also bring low tides that uncover beaches and other locations that are usually submerged.
One such place is the Ashby Shoal, a sandbar less than a mile from the shore of the Emeryville Marina in the San Francisco Bay.
On Thursday evening, the sandbar emerged from the water due to the tides being -1.31 feet, and beachgoers took full advantage.
The phenomenon is predicted to increase water levels by more than seven feet in low-lying areas of California, which experienced a high tide earlier this month. But this weekend will have a new moon that will boost tides even more
People are building barriers of sandbags along the coast in fear of the ‘king of tides’ set to flood the western shores.
SFGate reported seeing dozens of people pull their boats onto Ashby Shoal to catch the sunset on the Bay.
California is feeling the brunt of Mother Nature with devastating storms in recent weeks that brought 200 to 600 percent more rain than usual.
The series of atmospheric rivers that hit the state has done an estimated $1 billion in damage, dumping an estimated 24 trillion gallons of water on the state since December and leaving 19 people dead.